Creating the Actual Message Advertising agency R/GA was recently designated Advertising Age magazine's Agency of the Year for its exceptional ability to meld technology and creativity. Examples of the agency's approach include its “The Game Before The Game” campaign for Beats by Dre, the “One Nike” campaign describing Nike's integrated website and platform of products and services, and “Google Outside,” a digital outdoor billboard campaign in London. R/GA was also recognized by Ad Week as the Digital Agency of the Year for its use of mobile, social, and digital elements in its work. In fact, the tag line on its website is “R/GA for the connected age.” R/GA and other agencies use many forms of advertising to create their messages. A very popular form of advertising today is the use of a celebrity spokesperson. R/GA's use of well-known celebrities, such as soccer player Neymar da Silva Santos, NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, and NBA star LeBron James in Beats by Dre ads, are examples. Many companies use athletes, film and television stars, musicians, and other celebrities to talk to consumers through their ads. Advertisers who use a celebrity spokesperson believe that the ads are more likely to influence brand equity and sales. These ads feature a wide variety of celebrities, among them singer Beyoncé (Pepsi), actor Samuel L. Jackson (the Capital One Quicksilver card), and athlete Michael Jordan (Nike). L'Oréal Paris recently signed actress Naomi Watts as a spokeswoman for the company and its brands. Cyril Chapuy, brand global president, explains that Naomi was selected because “Her timeless beauty has made her the perfect woman to endorse our ultimate skincare innovation, Revitalift Filler.” Who is the most effective spokesperson? A recent report by Nielsen indicates that Liam Neeson and Pierce Brosnan are tied for first. Other highly ranked celebrities include Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Garner, and Sofia Vergara.
One potential shortcoming of this form of advertising is that the spokesperson's image may change over time, becoming inconsistent with the image of the company or brand. For example, Tour de France cyclist Lance Armstrong lost endorsement contracts with Nike and golf pro Tiger Woods lost contracts with AT&T and Accenture after the athletes received negative public attention. Many companies now probe the backgrounds of potential endorsers and consider retired athletes and legacy (deceased) athletes who are low risk and still have lasting appeal in the marketplace. Some companies are also using licensing agreements where the spokesperson's compensation is directly related to the success of the product they endorse. Another issue involved in creating the message is the complex process of translating the copywriter's ideas into an actual advertisement. Designing quality artwork, layout, and production for advertisements is costly and time- consuming. The American Association of Advertising Agencies reports that a high-quality, 30-second TV commercial typically costs about $354,000 to produce. One reason for the high cost is that as companies have
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